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What is it about nice people that attract total idiots?Nice people are martyrs. Idiots are evangelists.


Friday, April 27, 2012

Time Machine week 13

Can you imagine a better cover on a Time magazine than the one for April 27th, 1970?  Yes, it's time for a normal, run of the mill Time Machine this week.  Oh, except for one thing:  If you look under President Nixon, you'll see a link to my new Martin Hall Of Fame Page.  Which of course means that next week I'll be doing the third class of inductees right here on this very program, so feel free to peruse the current roster and nominate anyone of your fancy.  Also, I got my card from Lyndylou at The Giggle Fest for this month's Great Postcard Campaign!  And don't let all the pictures of shirtless men keep you from visiting her- even though they made my visit a brief one, LOL.

This week, we have the only US Congressman to hit #1; the villainy of Lord Marmaduke Ffogg; the benefit by Bowser that didn't quite pan out; and we link the Beatles to... the Beatles?!?  Let us move on...

12 songs debut in the hot 100- and I'll mention 2 of them.  The Carpenters bring their version of Ticket To Ride in at #96; The Doors hit with Roadhouse Blues at #91.  Other birthdays this week include, turning 30, John Mellancamp's Hurts So Good and Rainbow's Stone Cold; turning 35, Bob Seger's Main Street, Alice Cooper's You And Me, Al Stewart's On The Border, Aerosmith's Back In The Saddle, Andy Gibb's I Just Wanna Be Your Everything, Manfred Mann's Spirits In The Night, Peter McCann's Do You Wanna Make Love, and Waylon Jenning's Lukenbach, Texas (Back To The Basics Of Love); turning 40 are those greedy Carpenters with It's Going To Take Some Time, Neil Diamond's Song Sung Blue, CCR's Someday Never Comes, Neil Young's Old Man, Elton John's Rocket Man, Bill Withers' Lean On Me, and Mouth And McNeil's How Do You Do?; and finally the Young Rascals' Groovin' turns 45.  Woof, what a bunch!

Today's look back into the past brings us to a household name- Rudy Vallee.  Rudy and his Connecticut Yankees were at #1 this week in 1929 with Honey, and 1930 with The Stein Song (The University of Maine theme).  Rudy's chart run was from 1929-39, and racked up 71 top 40s, 49 top tens, and two more #1s- 1932's Brother Can You Spare A Dime, and 1937's Vieni, Vieni.  Rudy was at first more of a band leader and reluctant singer, and he formed the Yankees, which started out with 2 violins, 2 saxaphones, a piano, a drum, and a banjo.  At one point he recorded for Hit Of The Week, which put out one record a week, sold at newsstands at a low price on what amounted to laminated cardboard.  Soon he branched out into movies, and had parts in movies such as I Remember Mama (1948) and How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying (1967).  He also had cameos on TV shows like Here's Lucy, Petticoat Junction, and Chips, as well as a 1984 cameo on NBC soap Santa Barbara.  But one TV appearance was bound to go down in history:

Lord Marmaduke Fogg's first and only appearance was in three part story ( "The Londinium Larcenies", "The Foggiest Notion", and "The Bloody Tower") in the third season of the 1960s Adam West Batman show, where he was played by Rudy Vallee. His plan was simple, use his lordly title and palatial estate to open a girls boarding school and use it to recruit upper crust young ladies to be trained in the fine art of criminality and steal the Crown Jewels. However Lord Marmaduke Fogg could never have counted on no one less than the President of the United States calling on Batman personally to go help out Scotland Yard in solving the case. Despite his bevy of bloodthirsty beauties, killer bees, and a fog spewing pipe, he proved no match for the Caped Crusader and the Boy Wonder who (with an able assist from Batgirl) put an end to his sinister scheme.

Frankly I don't understand why Lord Marmaduke Fogg never made another appearance after the Adam West show. Don't get me wrong, he definitely needs some tweaking to make him a reoccuring Batman villain, but not a lot. Obviously he needs to open his Boarding School of Crime in Gotham rather than London (or Londinium as it was bizarrely called in the show), but he could easily be a British Ex-Pat. And wearing a removable cast due to faked gout is silly when faking a limp means he could use a cane with a hidden sword instead. The rest practically writes itself. Perhaps Lord Marmaduke Fogg had served with Alfred Pennyworth in her majesty's secret service before turning to a life of villainy. Robin could easily fall for a girl in his Academy of Crime, or Batgirl could go undercover. Such a setup would not necessarily make him one of Batman's greatest rogues, but an aristocrat who takes in wayward and abandoned children and gives them paramilitary training so they can live a life operating outside the law could surely serve as a dark foil for a Dark Knight with an army of teenaged squires.

This comes from the Entertained Organizer Blog.  Vallee died in July of 1986.

The big dropper hangs in the top 40:  Bridge Over Troubled Waters slides from 22 to 35.  The big mover this week is Joe Cocker's The Letter, which leaps 30 to land at #49.

That brings us to our Where Are They Now spot, and at #50 this week we have Dennis Yost and the Classics IV with a tune called  The Funniest Thing, a smooth, simple, wistful ballad like all of their hits.  The original band was Yost, Buddy Buie, JR Cobb, and Joe Wilson.  Cobb and Buie, who would go on to form the Atlanta Rhythm Section, wrote the band's big hits- Spooky (#3, 1968), Stormy (#5, 1968), and Traces (#2, 1969).
 Yost continued to put line ups together; then, in 2006, he took a serious fall down a flight of stairs.  To help the Yost family financially, Jon "Bowser" Bauman put together an all-star charity bash.  Joining him at the show at Rhinos Live in Cincinatti were Denny Laine (Wings, Moody Blues), Chuck Negron (3 Dog Night), the Skyliners, and Ian Mitchell (Bay City Rollers), among others.
Denny Laine, Ian Mitchell, Jimmy Jay "DJ to the stars", Dennis, and Ronnie from Ronnie and the Daytonas at the Yost benefit.

Unfortunately, the benefit went in the red, and it amounted as little more than a morale booster for the Yosts.  Over the next several months, Dennis groomed Tom Garrett as his replacement, and passed away in December of 2008.  Buddy and JR are still involved with ARS, and Garrett continues Dennis' legacy in the Classics IV.

Four songs hit the top 40 this week.  Marty Robbins eases from 42 to 38 with My Woman, My Woman, My Wife.  Van Morrison zooms 14 up to #33 with Come Running (and I guess he did!).  Also up 14 to #32 is Ray Stevens with Everything Is Beautiful.  And jumping 16 to land at 25, Simon and Garfunkel with Cecilia. 

Two songs join the top 10, two fall out. The droppers are our new grandpa chair sitter, House Of The Rising Sun (8-24), and Bobby Sherman's prophetic Easy Come, Easy Go (7-18).

Coming in at #10, up one, are the Friends Of Distinction with Love Or Let Me Be Lonely. The Supremes move up a notch to #9 with Up The Ladder To The Roof. Edison Lighthouse drops 3 to #8 with Love Grows etc., etc.  Badfinger slips one to #7 with Come And Get It.  The First Edition checks in on page #6, up 3, with Something's Burning.  John Lennon and Instant Karma drop 2 to #5.  Blasting its way in at #4, up 8 spots, are the Guess Who with American Woman.  And that brings us to our six degrees victims.

With groups like the Beatles, or songs like Let It Be (which falls from the top spot to #3 this week), the rub isn't finding the connections, but in finding ones you haven't tried yet.  So let's start this time with the record's producer, one-time star and current convict Phil Spector.  Phil had went from founding the Teddy Bears (To Know Him Is To Love Him) to inventing his famous Wall Of Sound.  The "Wall" was performed by a consistant group of studio hands who were watched over by Spector's two lieutenants, Jack Nitsche and Sonny Bono (who, with Cher, hit #1 with I Got You Babe, and his later election to Congress made him the only Congressman to ever have a #1 hit).  Together, the pair wrote the song Needles And Pins, which was recorded by a band called the Searchers.  When this song hit the US charts in 1964, they became the second act from Liverpool to hit the American charts.

Wanna guess who the first was?

So that leaves us with a 2-horse race.  Horse in the place spot would be Norman Greenbaum, who moves up 3 to #2 with Spirit In The Sky.  And that means our new #1 is...

The Jackson Five with ABC!!!!

Next week, the new class in the MHOF!  Send those nominations in, I'm easy!


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